Blog Archives

The Elements of Style, Fourth Edition—William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White

Strunk, William Jr. and E. B. White The Elements of Style Longman 4th edition, 1999 ISBN: 978-0205309023 Buy from Amazon Strunk and White is, and was, aimed at English undergraduate essay writers. It began as a small pamphlet that Strunk wrote, printed himself, and gave to his freshman comp and…

On the Reviewing of Books

[I now] suggest some hard-won guidelines for responsible reviewing. For instance: First, as in Hippocrates, do no harm. Second, never stoop to score a point or bite an ankle. Third, always understand that in this symbiosis, you are the parasite. Fourth, look with an open heart and mind at every…

Civil Disobedience, Bibliophile Style

As unemployment rises, municipal tax bases and city budgets fall. That’s meant scores of libraries closing all over the world. In 2009, Philadelphia announced that they were closing all branches of the Philadelphia Free Library. The news of the closing spread, largely via Twitter, Facebook and blogs, and the decision…

War for the Oaks — Emma Bull

Bull, Emma. War for the Oaks. Orb Books, 2001. ISBN: 978-0765300348 Buy from Amazon Buy for Kindle “Urban fantasy” is relatively new as a fantasy sub-genre. Certainly my first exposure to urban fantasy was via the deserved popularity of the Borderlands shared universe. Borderlands created a new genre space for…

Sunshine — Robin McKinley

McKinley, Robin. Sunshine. Berkley Trade, October 2008. ISBN: 0425224015 Buy from Amazon Amazon MP3 CD Audio Book It’s not that any of the Others are really popular, or that it had only been the vampires against us during the Wars. But a big point about vampires is that they are…

The Mabinogi and Other Medieval Welsh Tales — Patrick K. Ford

Ford, Patrick K. The Mabinogi and Other Medieval Welsh Tales. Berkley: University of California Press, 1977. February 2008, second edition. ISBN: 0520253964 Buy from Amazon The mabinogi, as the four branches are probably properly called, are a collection of four interrelated Welsh mythological tales. They consist, in order, of “Pwyll,…

Turtle Cookies

Now that I have reached my “Golden Years”, I look back on the years of raising my three children and one of the things I remember as being very special is being in the kitchen with my girls. They were always in the kitchen with me when I made meals…

NYT Editorial on Medicare Costs

There will likely be no real solution until the American health care system moves away from unfettered fee-for-service payments that encourage doctors to perform unnecessary and costly tests and procedures and pays them instead for better management of a patient’s care over time. You can read the rest of the…

Grilled Fresh Pacific Northwest Salmon

I admit that I’m really loving easy access to fresh, locally caught, salmon. At this time of year in particular, when it’s simple to buy a fillet or a couple of salmon steaks, and take them and a bottle of wine to a local park for grilling, it’s pretty hard…

Pompeii and Herculaneum: Abandoned to the Ravages of Time

Peter Popham of Prospect Magazine asks: Pompeii and Herculaneum have been listed as Unesco World Heritage Sites since 1997. So why isn’t the world’s culture policeman keeping the world’s most important Roman sites in order? Popham details the rapid decay of two of the richest and most important archaeological sites…

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